Spirit delivers first pylon for Mitsubishi Regional Jet

The first flight test pylon for the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) is comprised of aluminum, titanium and composite components and will mount the plane's Pratt & Whitney power plant to the wing.

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Spirit AeroSystems Inc. (Wichita, Kan., USA) announced on April 28 the rollout of the first flight test pylon for the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) aircraft. The pylon and underwing structure are used to mount the aircraft's Pratt & Whitney power plant to the wing and are designed and manufactured by Spirit at the company's Wichita facility.

In 2008, Mitsubishi awarded a contract to Spirit AeroSystems to design and build pylons for the MRJ70 and MRJ90 aircraft models. The work package also includes systems, pylon-­to-wing integration hardware and the aft fairing package.

An industry team of Spirit, Mitsubishi and Pratt & Whitney have worked together to define structural interface points and complete the pylon structural design. The finished product is made of lightweight aluminum, titanium and composite components, and is a combination of purchased items, Spirit-­fabricated components and Mitsubishi­-furnished equipment.

"Today's rollout marks a pivotal milestone and highlights a unique opportunity to collaborate with a new original equipment manufacturer in developing an all­new aircraft for the 70 to 100­seat market segment," says Cathy McClain, director of Business and Regional Jet programs for Spirit.

"Spirit has extensive experience with underwing pylons, and is honored to work with Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation on this program," says David Coleal, executive vice president, Boeing, Business/Regional Jets, and Aftermarket. "The MRJ aircraft pylon is the latest example of how we put our team's creativity, determination and expertise to work in support of our customer."

The MRJ is a next­-generation regional jet developed by Mitsubishi Aircraft based on technology cultivated by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. The MRJ family consists of the MRJ90 (90-seat class) and the MRJ70 (70-seat class).